Kat Kronenberg’s Dream Big was an accidental find for me. I was in search of a book by the same title to check off a genre on the PopSugar 2017 reading challenge that I’m having fun with this year. As I shared with you in my review of another book by the same name, anything with “Dream Big” resonates with me. And since Duane’s goddaughter is a twin, I figured I couldn’t go wrong with this particular impulse purchase.
Besides, the main character in this one is a monkey. 😉 There’s no way I was going to pass up that fun!
Kronenberg tactfully uses African animals and insects to take young readers through normal coming of age topics: being able to do a physical feat, being beautiful, being accepted by others, and having a happy home. Each character (a caterpillar, a tadpole, a flamingo, a baboon, and termite) goes through a transformation that requires first expressing a dream, being patient while obtaining the dream, dealing with nay-sayers, and eventually celebrating the achievement of the dream.
Kronenberg approaches dreaming from a refreshing standpoint. The dreamers conceive of dreams that are beyond their wheelhouse and are seemingly impossible to attain. Young readers are exposed to the idea that even though logic and societal norms may say no, there still is a chance that the dream can come true through faith and perseverance. A bit of a heady topic for a 5-7 year old, but it plants the seed and/or opens the door for an important conversation with the child.
Stephanie Dehennin provides engaging and colorful illustrations that perfectly support the book’s message. I particularly enjoy the artwork because not only does is it engaging for children, it is realistic. It starts to paint a broad picture in the mind of youngsters that may start to open the doors of the world for them.
We look forward to reading this book with our goddaughters and talking about how East Africa is different than Texas or Louisiana, or even one of their favorite places, Disney World. Who knows? We might inspire them to become journey monkeys when they grow up. 😉
To all the dreamers out there—young or old—Kat Kronenberg’s Dream Big is a lovely book that encourages the reader to identify and pursue their dreams, no matter how big or impossible they may seem.
Have thoughts about this title? Let us know in the comments.
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